EU aims to have 30% of its produce from organic farming

Tista' taqra bil- Malti.

The European Union is aiming to have 30% of the agricultural produce among the 27 member states from organic farming.

Malta is the member state which produces the least organically farmed products among the EU member states, according to Eurostat figures quoted in a document which was published by the European Commission for public consultation.

The European Commission launched a public consultation on its future Action Plan on Organic Farming.

Only 0.4% of the agricultural produce in Malta is through organic farming.

This proposal is being put forward as part of the Commission’s European Green Deal. The European Commission is planning to allocate a specific budget of €40 million in funds for organic farming under the promotion policy. This budget will co-finance promotion actions and information campaigns on the EU organic sector, raising awareness about its qualities and aiming at stimulating demand.

A change in requirements is needed for local producers

MEP candidate and EU official Peter Agius underlined that local producers need to be assisted and encouraged to produce some products through organic farming. He noted that for this to happen, the requirements needs to be adjusted, adding that at present it is very difficult for someone producing in Malta to qualify as an organic farming.

Speaking to Newsbook.com.mt, Agius said that in the coming weeks he will hold meetings with representatives from the European Commission, local farmers and NGOs representing Maltese producers before submitting his proposals.

One may participate in the public consultation exercise here. The public consultation will be open for a period of 12 weeks and will close on 27 November.

What is organic farming?

Organic farming aims to produce food using natural substances and processes, leading to an agricultural method with limited environmental impact. It encourages the use of farm-derived renewable resources, the enhancement of biological cycles within the farming system, the maintenance of biodiversity, the preservation of regional ecological balances, the maintenance and increase of soil fertility, and the responsible use and proper care of water. Additionally, organic farming rules encourage a high standard of animal welfare and require farmers to meet the specific behavioural needs of animals.